Lifetime RR

July 13, 2009

Yesterday was one of those days when I was in the perfect mental space to race. I woke up alert and ready at 4.15am, had my coffee, and rode my bike to the race site. I executed my pre-race plan to the minute, and felt loose and relaxed when I started the swim. Because it is a staggered-start race, I didn’t know it at the time, but I had the fastest swim in my age group, which was already enough for me to call the day a success.

I had a frustrating transition with some wetsuit struggles and one of my shoes falling off my pedal when I unracked my bike, but I kept my cool and managed to not get crazy about it. Then less than 3 miles into the bike, I heard the sound of a waterbottle falling out of my cage. I reached around to realize that BOTH my bottles were gone and yelled out “SERIOUSLY???”.  All of my racing energy got channeled into me being pissed off about losing my carefully-planned nutrition and hydration planned.  Fortunately, I collected myself quickly and began formulating a plan.  There was no way I was going back to get them so I decided to relax and go with it, promising myself I’d take time to rehydrate in transition if necessary.  I prepared to let go of my running goal of feeling great, knowing that would be hard without proper hydration and calories on the bike.

Lucky for me (and unbeknownst to me at the time), just a few miles down the road there was a water stop where they were handing out bottles, so although I had lost my sports drink, dehydration was no longer a necessity and I had a vehicle with which to digest my gels.

The bike went fairly well.  It’s a pretty technical course with some deceiving inclines and lots of ninety degree turns, so I was not expecting anything spectacular on the bike.  I was, however, THRILLED with how my new bike performed and very glad I took the time to get it repaired the day before.

I got off the bike with a big smile, feeling like I was on target for my goal for a feel-great run.  I kept an eye on my HR and tried to keep a lid on things for the first loop.  Every time I passed the throngs of in-law relatives that had come to cheer me on I got goosebumps – it was such an awesome feeling to have them all there.  I got passed by two girls on the run and resolved to stay with my plan of holding back for the first loop.  Then on the second loop I opened it up and started hauling.  I nearly exclaimed out loud when I saw that I was reeling one of those girls back in – I have NEVER been able to come back on the run after being passed.  Sure enough I chipped away at the gap until I was right behind her.  Then I took a deep breath and surged past her as we exchanged encouraging words.  The thrill of being able to hunt someone down on the run has always eluded me with my formerly very weak run, so you can imagine my elation at the feeling of passing people!

I finished strong and was over the moon at having felt so good on the run.  I still have a lot of work to do on my running, but I really feel like I’m on the right track now.  It’s easy to look at the times for the elite girls and feel like I was a snail out there on Saturday, but I need to remember that I did achieve all of my race goals and that I am on my way to where I want to go; I’m just not there yet.  Chipping away, chipping away…


One Response to “Lifetime RR”

  1. Beth Says:

    Wooo-hoooo!! Great race Ness!! It’s always great to achieve A goal, any goal in a race, let alone all of them! Congrats!

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